The Ti Bom Neesim – Neesim Viela Organization in Northern Region has organized an open forum on the importance of studying Mother-Tongues in schools.
This forum was held at the Tamale College of Education(TACE) where parents, teachers, community members, traditional authorities, political leaders, the Ministry of Education, GES officials, general public and other stakeholders in education were invited to attend.
It was revealed that most students do not understand what their teachers teach them because their mother-tongue is not the preferred language used in teaching.
It was explained further that the use of the English Language is not helping children to understand what they are being taught.
For instance, at the forum, it was discovered that many children in Northern Ghana are not able to read and understand a simple text by the age of 10 years; they suffer from what experts term as ‘learning poverty’.
Data among the Dagomba showed that 787,800 children constituting 89 percent between ages 7 and 14 lack foundational reading skills.
Chief Sintaro Mahama speaking to the media said that research shows that people or children who are able to know, learn and speak their mother-tongue can contribute a lot to the society.
“Research has proven that people who learn, speak and know their mother-tongue contribute a lot to the society” hence the need to promote teaching in one’s local dialect for improved impact.
He encouraged that the mother-tongue should be thought from basic school to the higher level to help students understand and speak their local languages well.
The president for the Dagbani teachers association, Mohammed Baba said they have formed an association and written a book that would help both teachers and student to write the Dagbani language well and also advised parents to buy the book for their children.
“We have realised that our Dagbani Language is going down where the teachers who are there are not teaching it well like previously…So we decided to form an association so that persons teaching it can get assistance from us when they don’t understand…Dagbani Language is divided into various categories from grammar, tradition and culture and the chieftaincy parts.”